Hack Tuke, Daniel – Sickness - Hiccups induced by powerful emotions – fright
Type of Spiritual Experience
A hiccup is an involuntary contraction (myoclonic jerk) of the diaphragm that may repeat several times per minute. In Latin it is called singultus for the act of catching one's breath while sobbing. The hiccup is an involuntary action involving a reflex arc. Once triggered, the reflex causes a strong contraction of the diaphragm followed about 0.25 second later by closure of the vocal cords, which results in the classic "hic" sound.
A description of the experience
As described in Illustrations Of The Influence Of The Mind Upon The Body In Health And Disease, Designed To Elucidate The Action Of The Imagination - Daniel Hack Tuke, M.D., M.R.C.P.,
PART II. THE EMOTIONS.
CHAPTER VIII. INFLUENCE OF THE EMOTIONS UPON THE VOLUNTARY MUSCLES.
SECTION II. — Irregular and Excessive Muscular Contraction : Spasms and Convulsions.
We may here introduce a case of obstinate Singultus the result of Emotion, reported by Romberg (A Manual of the Nervous Diseases of Man. By M. H. Romberg, M.D. Translated for the Sydendam Society by Dr. Sieveking. 2 vols. 1853).
A Polish Jewess, set. 21, had a violent fright at the first outbreak of the Cracrow revolution, and suffered from hiccough in consequence. Three years afterwards she was admitted into the Policlinique, at Berlin. Owing to a complication with spasm of the glottis, it was particularly loud and sonorous. A spasmodic throwing back of the head, during each attack, showed the participation of other nerves than those involved in hiccough. There was tenderness of the epigastrium and of the spinous processes of the lower cervical and upper dorsal vertebrae, leucorrhoea, with regular menstruation. All the remedies previously tried had been ineffectual. It is not stated whether the treatment at the Policlinique proved more successful.